Barcelona Field Studies Centre

Information to Pupils in Preparation for a Field Study Visit


Pupils who are involved in a field study visit's planning and organisation, and who are well prepared, will make more informed decisions and will be less at risk.

Providing information and guidance to pupils is an important part of preparing for a school field study visit. Pupils should clearly understand what is expected of them and what the visit will entail. Pupils must understand what standard of behaviour is expected of them and why rules must be followed. The lack of control and discipline can be a major cause of accidents. Pupils should also be told about any potential dangers and how they should act to ensure their own safety and that of others.


The group leader should ensure that the pupils are capable of undertaking the proposed activity.

Pupils whose behaviour is such that the group leader is concerned for their safety, or for that of others, should be withdrawn from the activity. The group leader should consider whether such pupils should be sent home early.

Parents and pupils should be told in advance of the visit about the procedures for dealing with misbehaviour, how a pupil will be returned home safely and who will meet the cost.

Information to pupils

The group leader must ensure that the pupils understand key safety information.  Pupils should understand:

  • the aims and objectives of the visit/activity;

  • the background information about the place to be visited;

  • basic Spanish words ;

  • relevant Spanish culture and customs;

  • how to avoid specific dangers and why they should follow rules;

  • why safety precautions are in place;

  • why special safety precautions are in place for anyone with disabilities;

  • what standard of behaviour is expected from pupils;

  • the specific hotel rules;

  • appropriate and inappropriate personal and social conduct including sexual activity;

  • who is responsible for the group;

  • The coach driver's responsibilities and the extent to which he/she is 'in charge';

  • what not to bring back either within the UK or from abroad such as drugs, knives etc;

  • what to do if approached by anyone from outside the group;

  • rendezvous procedures;

  • what to do if separated from the group;

  • emergency procedures.

An example of a checklist to give to pupils is provided in the menu.

All group members should carry the address and telephone number of the accommodation in case an individual becomes separated.

Preparing pupils for remote supervision

During any time that remote supervision takes place the group leader must ensure that pupils are aware of the ground rules and are adequately equipped to be on their own in a group. A minimum group size of four is recommended. As a minimum pupils should have the following:

  • telephone numbers and emergency contacts if lost;

  • money;

  • maps and plans and any other information for them to act effectively;

  • location of local telephones and the appropriate coins;

  • a knowledge of how to summon help;

  • a knowledge of out of bounds areas or activities;

  • identity cards and a rendezvous point.

It is important that pupils are told not to go off on their own, are given clear instructions about permitted remote supervised activities and understand and accept the ground rules.

Transport and pupils

Pupils using transport on a visit should be made aware of basic safety rules including:

  • arrive on time and wait for the transport in a safe place;

  • do not rush towards the transport when it arrives;

  • bags must not block aisles or cause obstructions.

Medical needs

All teachers supervising visits should be aware of a pupil's medical needs and any medical emergency procedures. Summary sheets held by all teachers, containing details of each pupil's needs and any other relevant information provided by parents, is one way of achieving this. If appropriate, a volunteer teacher should be trained in administering medication, if they have not already been so trained, and should take responsibility in a medical emergency.

The group leader should discuss the pupil's individual needs with the parents. Parents should be asked to supply:

  • details of medical conditions;

  • emergency contact numbers;

  • the child's GP's name, address and phone number;

  • written details of any medication required (including instructions on dosage/times) and parental permission to administer;

  • parental permission if the pupil needs to administer their own medication or agreement for a volunteer teacher to administer;

  • information on any allergies/phobias;

  • information on any special dietary requirements.

The group leader should check that the insurance policy covers staff and pupils with preexisting medical needs.